Background and objectives:
Premature newborns have a number of oxidative stress-inducing disorders. Antioxidant defense is deficient in premature newborns. Hydrogen donors can be used to evaluate the non-enzymatic antioxidant defense. By measuring hydrogen donors, a group of antioxidants can be assessed: tocopherol, ascorbic acid, and glutathione. These represent the most relevant group of non-enzymatic antioxidants. The main aim of this study was to evaluate the non-enzymatic antioxidant defense capacity of premature newborns by measuring hydrogen donors. Materials and Methods:
We evaluated the non-enzymatic antioxidant capacity by hydrogen donor measurement in 24 premature newborns with various oxidative stress-inducing disorders and in 14 premature newborns without oxidative stress-inducing conditions. Statistical analysis was performed using the Statistica program (v. 8, StatSoft, Round Rock, TX, USA). Differences between groups were tested with Wilcoxon matched test for quantitative paired data or Mann–Whitney test for quantitative independent data. The Z test for proportions was used to compare qualitative data among subgroups. Results:
Hydrogen donors in the study group had a significantly lower value on the first day of life compared to the value of the control group. Also, the hydrogen donor value in the study group was significantly lower on the first day compared to the third day of life (p
< 0.05). Neonates with mild respiratory distress (14 cases) had increased hydrogen donor values on their third day of life compared to the first day of life. Conclusions:
The antioxidant capacity is influenced by oxidative stress-inducing disorders. Respiratory distress influenced the hydrogen donor value and antioxidant defense. Antioxidant defense gradually improves after birth according to gestational age.
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